Delaying the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme has sold out Australia’s regional and coastal communities, failing to protect these vulnerable areas from the impacts of climate change, according to NSW’s peak environment group.
“This decision by the Federal Government betrays the vast majority of the community wanting action on climate change,” Cate Faehrmann, executive director of the Nature Conservation Council of NSW said today.
“Our coastal communities are on the frontline of dealing with the effects of rising sea levels and increased weather events on precious coastal environments and infrastructure.
“They are currently bracing for sea level rises of up to several metres due to climate change and need immediate action on reducing our greenhouse gas emissions.
“A 25 per cent emissions cut will not stabilise global warming to under 2 degrees and ensure a safe climate future for Australia. There is a 50 per cent chance that temperature increases of more than 2 degrees could spell the death of the iconic Great Barrier Reef.
“International governments continue to discuss action aimed at stabilising carbon dioxide emissions at 450ppm when the latest science tells us this target will be inadequate in achieving global temperature rises of less than 2 degrees.
“The mechanisms for meeting any targets must be flexible enough to respond as our knowledge of global warming improves.
“Australia currently punches above its weight as the world’s largest greenhouse gas emitter per capita. It’s time the Government showed real leadership by making ambitious cuts to our carbon emissions that are in our national interest; and create impetus for the right outcome in international negotiations at Copenhagen later this year,” Ms Faehrmann said.